Leona Lester was born January 18, 1930, in Pettis County, Missouri to Richard and Erma Curd. She was the second of 12 children. She graduated from C.C. Hubbard in Sedalia, Mo., moved to Des Moines where she attended DMAAC and obtained her teaching certificate.
Leona was employed with Children and Family Services for over 28 years in the area of child development. She enjoyed her job so much that she retired and then went back to work at the organization part-time.
Leona was not only dedicated to her employer but also to her God and her church. Her and her sister Minnie moved here in response to an invitation from her good friend Geneva Ryles to come to Des Moines help grow the developing church, where she was fondly known as Sister Lester. As one of the early members of Philadelphia SDA Church she did whatever was needed to further the kingdom of God serving in areas including but not limited to: treasurer, usher, greeter, Sabbath School Division Leader, MV Leader, and faithful assistant to the Clerk taking the attendance record often times using no paper just her amazing memory.
It was while serving at Philadelphia that she met, George Lester. Eventually the two would go from being fellow members to husband and wife, remaining married for nearly 44 years.
Throughout her life, Leona enjoyed crossword and jigsaw puzzles. In her younger years she enjoyed archery and outdoor activities. In her later years, she took great pleasure in her "Sunday morning trips around the United States" as she visited with her relatives from all over via telephone. Many people don't know this, but Leona had a great appreciation for cars. Throughout the years, she could look at any car and accurately tell you the make and model. A sign of her independence and determination, throughout her life she also liked to walk everywhere she went.
Leona went to sleep in the Lord on Thursday, April 14th, 2016. Preceding her in death were: her husband George, son Gregory (died shortly after birth), parents Richard and Erma, and siblings Richard, James, Charles, Erma, Jerry, Gary and Minnie.
Left behind to cherish their memory are: her daughter Lynette (Jerry); sister Mary; brothers Herbert, Malcom and Allen; grandchildren Marcus, Lonnell, Michael, Trey and Jemaree, and a host of Great Grandchildren, cousins, nieces, nephews, church family and friends.
Cemetery Details Iowa Veteran's Cemetery
Van Meter, IA,
APR 22. 01:00 PM
Philadelphia Seventh Day Adventist church